Thursday, May 1, 2008

The Dark Room, what?

Interesting article in the New York Times regarding the phenomena that is Flickr.

"Consider photography. As art-school photographers continue to shoot on film, embrace chiaroscuro and resist prettiness, a competing style of picture has been steadily refined online: the Flickr photograph. Flickr, the wildly popular photo-sharing site, was founded by the Canadian company Ludicorp in 2004. Four years later, amid the more than two billion images that currently circulate on the site, the most distinctive offerings, admired by the site’s members and talent scouts alike, are digital images that “pop” with the signature tulip colors of Canon digital cameras."

I don't know about you, but that sounds so unappealing. This makes me want to go home, pull out the old 35mm and toy away in the dark for hours developing one or two pictures. The Crew is not stranger to using Flickr to showcase our "Found in" series, but I am not at the point where I consider Flickr's digitally manipulated photos works of art.

The New York Times offers some Flickr advice:

BY CONTRAST: Explore your camera’s capacity to do more than take pictures. Maybe the actual shoot is just the first step in acquiring the raw materials (colors, shapes) that get twisted at the computer. If you dare, visit the high-dynamic range, where boring travel shots turn into the landscapes of Coleridge. See the Cambridge in Colour site for online tutorials in HDR. Flickr’s HDR group is also illuminating:

LES PHOTOS DES SUPERCUTIES: O.K., so they don’t sound as classy as Cartier-Bresson, but
Extra Super Cutie and smoothdude — screen names for exceptional Flickr photographers — might just be photography’s new wave. Other compelling Flickr artists: antimethod, aqui-ali, ar’alani, eyetwist, sweet distin and razorbern. Let go of your snobberies and float down their photostreams.

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